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Hello again recruitment, how have you been?  It’s been quite a while since I wheeled out the old Whiteboard blog and cracked open a set of erasable marker pens to share my musings on the world of recruitment, so please bear with me here.

Looking back, it was October 2020, when your more frequently heard recruitment anarchist agitator commentator, Sean Walters, went away for his honeymoon.  I would link his name to his LinkedIn profile but, as you may have noticed, his strident opinions and free-form handling of social etiquettes led to him getting cancelled.  It was pretty easy for him to create a new profile again, but the surge in activity and connections to a brand new profile triggered something inside LinkedIn’s AI wheezebag that thought he might just be a bot.

Given the recent expose into a team of Israeli hackers offering their army of fake social media avatars to anyone looking for a helping hand with a vote count, including fake LinkedIn profiles, it is probably little wonder.

The real wonder, perhaps, is that for Sean this has been a most liberating experience.  Far from restricting his “candidate reach” or “talent insights” it has in fact removed an increasingly distractive noise and left him to focus on recruitment activity that actually gets results.  Having watched from the sidelines while focused on our other business JOYN, I’ve seen Sean take over the reins of Rice Consulting’s agency rec-to-rec desk and deliver consistently impressive results over the last 3 months, even without a LinkedIn presence.

Now, there could be a myriad of factors contributing to this, not least of which is that the recruitment agency sector clearly remains positive and bullish about the economic landscape ahead.  Or at least, the more forward-thinking ones are anticipating a short-lived softening of demand but really, with unemployment still at 3%, immigration prioritising morning teas over issuing visas, and an imminent influx of insurance company moolah to repair our soggy and broken land, there is plenty to keep good recruiters busy in the months ahead.

Anyway, it’s my turn to blog since he is away overseas, and I’m getting all like it’s 2015 again and, for the next week, will be back in my spiritual place of running the agency rec-to-rec desk here.  I’ve dipped back into LinkedIn to connect with someone I Inmailed 4 years ago and who has moved to a new city, so is looking for a new recruitment role.  I’ve met a new client who I already knew from yonder years, but we arranged via LinkedIn.  I spoke to a nice young man who shared his LinkedIn profile with me, and is keen to attend our upcoming ACCESS new-to-recruitment event in March.

But did I really need LinkedIn to do this?  All of these people also had my email and phone number, and just chose to make contact via LinkedIn, perhaps because it happened to be the particular form of communication they were on when they thought of reaching out.  Already I can feel the time-wasting drag of the scrolling timeline rabbit hole sucking me in, making me feel like I’m not reading enough inspirational quotes, not treating my team to enough celebratory days out, not humble-bragging about my latest triumph over adversity.

I do like to see all of the jobs recruiters are continuing to post on there though.  Because we have some really good ones going too.  If you’d like to know a bit more about any of them then, for the next week only, I am back in the hot seat and I’d love to hear from you!

Jonathan Rice

Director of New Zealand rec-to-rec firm Rice & Co, co-founder of freelance recruiter platform JOYN, and people-centric technology firm superHUMAN Software. Recruitment innovator, agitator and frustrated idealist, father of two, husband of one, and lover of all things Arsenal and crafty beer.